A new type of unicycle?

Geared hub…Geared hub…Geared hub…Just create a production geared hub with at least two gears

A really strong 12" so i can just get it out my bag wherever i am and ride something

Wow, thanks for all the ideas,

In this particular subject we are encouraged to look not only at the overall appearance but also the usability and suitability for the intended users. The subject for this project is for Manufacturing Technology so it is a bit engineer-y. Most importantly the manufacturing techniques involved will be a big factor. Sadly I will not have the luxury of time and resources to be designing internally geared hubs and the like but these are all good ideas that show what people are looking for when it comes to unicycle improvements.

Keep those ideas coming.


I would definitely buy a trials 12" (or even a 16") with a really fat tire.

Never fear Harper, a new style of riding is indeed what I said in the initial post but the way the conversation went is just as useful. Too many designs are done because the designer wanted it that way, rather than what the users actually asked for. There is much food for thought already. I look forward to hearing more comments, both with design and engineering implications.
My tutors keep telling me I think like an engineer and not a designer so I may as well not fight it too hard.

an idea i have is a training unicycle. have a really wide, flat tire so that with a little effort, falling sideways is not a problem. then have 2 removable attachments which are bent to contour along the front and back to help stop people from falling off if they lean too far forward or backwards. this unicycle could not only help people with riding but, coasting, 1 foot riding, wheel walking (with the removal of the front attachment) and other freestyle techniques as well. for wheel diameter (including the tire) probably between 20-24

heres a very quick sketch i made for clarity (im a terrible artist)


Why not look at some of the new composite matierals and processes that are available nowadays to to make stronger lighter unicycles… and ones that look nice. :slight_smile:

The 3 aspects that an industrial designer considers when designing are

  1. Aesthetic, 2. Function, 3. Manufacture. Engineers often find aesthetic when designing… but don’t appreciate why it is important, the industrial designer knows why it is important.


This is labelled as worlds worse bike, maybe someone could adapt idea to make the worlds worse unicycle! Apparently is ridden in a walking motion rather that circular motion. Be interesting to see a unicycle ridden this way.


Reply to Alex, its been done


That’s a pretty cool tricycle. Hey, if they just added a chain from the cranks to the rear wheel, they could probably remove the middle wheel altogether! :roll_eyes: :slight_smile:

I have a picture of a bunch of those bikes towing a parade float. It didn’t look easy, but I think this was less about the drive train and more about harnessing a bunch of bikes like horses to pull something. :slight_smile:

I’m pretty sure it was a promotion for that same brand of bike (late 80s) though that type of drive train was around over a hundred years ago. I’ve seen far, far worse bikes; not sure what the downsides of that drivetrain are.

and never thought about replacing butyl for latex, which -regarless wether you’re focussed on drilled rims or not- would be a major improvement in riding characteristics for only little money. Same for good bearings. Limited choise, as the importance of these parts are undervalued, and went to obscure sizing.

You don’t want to know what’s on my G:\ spot…

Talking about G (the new C); can you write G-code?
Is LinuxCNC.org something to involve in your project?

Really? I’m less than convinced - particularly compared to slightly larger tyres, slightly lighter (ie thinner sidewall) tyres or a slight change in tyre pressure.

Ride blindfolded on a 622, one tubelar and one not…

I use to sit on two of these (both) for sometimes up to 30 hours a week,
but even unexperienced you will feel.
Now I’m more than convinced that if you reduce the number of wheels the effect will increase.

Not only that; even in butyl you can feel difference; the old Primo innertubes that innitially came together with the wall were a waaaay different quality than anything else. And with a good tyre you notice the difference.
Sure; in trial it’s not a huge big deal. But in freestyle (again; in combination with the right tyre - so not a cheap thick plastic nylon thing) it would make the riding more pleasant.

Unfortunely nobody wants or can produce, at least; so they say. But I’ve heard that before; and requested custom tyres are now in the portfolio of the brand I was talking to. So who knows what’s on the market next year…

A full suspension Muni. Several have built ones that effectively only suspend the seat, but none have made a fulll sus.
A lot of interesting ideas in this thread.

Learning aid - Justonewheel.com buit a device that you bolt to the bottom of the frame in place of the bearing caps.

Fixed gear set up that would be easy to mass produce. A few on hear have built their own including one w/ a chain drive on a 26".

Just reading about KH’s new book. I think John Foss should write a book about unicycle history. I can’t think of anyone else with as much knowledge and contacts. Usually, writing vanity books (it is called vanity press if you do not have a publisher), is kinda lame. However, there is a need for a good book on uni history. It might sell only a few thousand copies. KH’s book makes a bit more sense $ wise (excellent advertising for KH). Even if KH’s book is a loss leader, it’s advertising.

For sure, for it’s target audience, many thousands would be sold. It would maybe rival KH’s book as a must have for uni riders. I think if John Foss made a coffee table quality history of uni riding, it would sell really well. For one thing, he already owns most of the unis he would want to illustrate. For another, there is no comparable product on the market, nor can there be.

Tried that, and the tubs didn’t help much with staying upright.

The question is, have you honestly ever ridden a bike when you didn’t know whether you were on a clincher or a tub? The difference you’re noticing is almost certainly placebo effect - as I mentioned, small differences in tyre pressure or different tyres (latex tubed tubs typically have lighter sidewalls than a clincher, which makes far more difference than the tube used) have more effect.

You mean like doing training on competition wheels*, because your regular wheels were under maintainance, and you forgot about that, untill you wonder why that nasty passage (with stones in stead of asphalt) went soo much different, and suddenly remind why? Uhm… let me think if I was thinking about that event when writing my previous post…

In 1991 Pariba Intertech B.V. brought, a clincher, one of the first -if not the first- with kevlar in it, to proffesional racing, trough the TVM team**. It ignited a revolution, cause what was kept for impossible; soon the entire peleton abandoned the tubes. Even rim production stopped. The Pariba’s came simultanious with the Rigida DP18 that 2 decades later still/again is a top product (and I once had a nice talk with it’s designer, just before it was re-introduced).
But nowedays that tube to clincher event is reverced. I tell you why: because a tube with latex simply is MUCH better (it’s not marketing talk - as a matter of fact supply cannot keep up with demand).

Another less succesful experiment of the same TVM team those days, were Kirk Precision bicycles, made of a lot of seawater, so they say. So to return to the topic. What about magnesium unicycles. That would fit “new type”:

Click image for unofficial website.

Very kind of you. I’ve had plans to do it over the years, but I think Kris may have got tired of waiting for mine so he made his own. :slight_smile:
For one thing, he already owns most of the unis he would want to illustrate.
What? Nonsense. I may own most of what was available in the 80s/90s, but we’ve come a long way since then. Mostly I’ve run out of garage. :wink:

My thought on doing a unicycle book has always been to aim it at elementary school libraries. That would not be the sole intended audience, but if that target can be done, it should be generally popular. I would do a book on all forms of unicycling, with history, instructions and ideas. And pictures, of course…

But it would be a daunting project; something I have an even greater appreciation of after watching the progress of Kris’ book. Buy it; mine, if it ever happens, won’t be soon.